Potential improvements in shock-mitigation efficacy of a polyurea-augmented advanced combat helmet

A. Grujicic, M. Laberge, M. Grujicic, B. Pandurangan, J. Runt, J. Tarter, G. Dillon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Scopus citations


The design of the currently used Advanced Combat Helmet (ACH) has been optimized to attain maximum protection against ballistic impacts (fragments, shrapnel, etc.) and hard-surface collisions. However, the ability of the ACH to protect soldiers against blast loading appears not to be as effective. Polyurea, a micro-segregated elastomeric copolymer has shown superior shock-mitigation capabilities. In the present work, a combined Eulerian/Lagrangian transient non-linear dynamics computational fluid/solid interaction analysis is used to investigate potential shock-mitigation benefits which may result from different polyurea-based design augmentations of the ACH. Specific augmentations include replacement of the currently used suspension-pad material with polyurea and the introduction of a thin polyurea internal lining/external coating to the ACH shell. Effectiveness of different ACH designs was quantified by: (a) establishing the main forms of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI); (b) identifying the key mechanical causes for these injuries; and (c) quantifying the extents of reductions in the magnitude of these mechanical causes. The results obtained show that while the ACH with a 2-mm-thick polyurea internal lining displays the best blast mitigation performance, it does not provide sufficient protection against mTBI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1562-1579
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Materials Engineering and Performance
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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